And in Chile, family members of those killed or disappeared under the U.S.-backed dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet held a protest outside Santiago’s main cathedral on Thursday ahead of a planned Catholic mass today for jailed members of the former regime. The protesters wore photographs of their loved ones and held signs reading “never forget.” This is Carla Pellegrin, whose brother Raúl was disappeared under the dictatorship.
Carla Pellegrin: “The human rights violators of this country are going to ask for forgiveness in a mass, to obtain prison benefits. We absolutely reject a pardon, because we are neither for forgiveness nor forgetting. And basically that’s because the missing are still missing, because our loved ones who were tortured, who were killed, are no longer here, which happens in many cases. And there’s still much impunity, such as in the case of my brother, certainly, and because there’s a pact of silence.”
On September 11, 1973, democratically elected President Salvador Allende was toppled in a U.S.-backed coup, ushering in 17 years of brutal dictatorship under Augusto Pinochet.